Conquering Chlamydia

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Chlamydia trachomatis, a gram-negative bacterium that often causes no symptoms, is creating a hidden epidemic. The asymptomatic nature of chlamydia promotes its spread; chlamydia is the most commonly reported notifiable disease in the United States. Nurse practitioners, as community members, create the optimal foundation for a healthy community. An interventional community approach to capture and treat asymptomatic chlamydia through the use of open and honest communication in a university health setting was used. A group of 550 sexually active males and females ages 18-24 years who accessed a university health service were provided with chlamydia education and an opportunity for routine chlamydia screening. Overall, 13.1% of the total population offered chlamydia screening were tested for chlamydia; of these, 5.6% tested positive. Routine chlamydia screening and education provides an opportunity to normalize sexual health in a population at high risk for chlamydia infection and offers the most robust chance of capturing and treating asymptomatic chlamydia.

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